Continuing Education and Training at Work
An increasingly common means by which learning across working life is being provided is through provisions of continuing education and training (CET) organised and enacted in partnerships between tertiary education organisations and employers. Often, these provisions are seen as an extension or variation of initial occupational preparation, the traditional core business of tertiary education institutions. However, as CET becomes an increasingly important component of tertiary education provisions, greater consideration is required of processes and practices that are best suited to this form of provision of education and the needs and capacities of those who participate in it. This consideration includes issues of access for individuals who are employed while balancing family and other social commitments and the occupational capacities that employers seek to develop in their workers. This chapter reports the findings of a national project in Australia which examined the efficacy of existing CET provisions to identify and promote what a national CET provision should comprise. What the findings consistently indicate is that this provision of education will need to be based on the circumstances of individuals' work and for the most part their work practices, augmented by assistance provided by more experienced co-workers and specialist trainers engaging with these workers in the circumstances of their work and, often, while engaged in work. This is not to deny the importance and roles that specific training interventions (e.g. classroom events) can play in the overall provision of CET, but these largely augment what is made available and what occurs within an individual's circumstance of practice. In all, a key contribution of this chapter is to set out the range of CET models and practices that are likely to be most helpful for securing workers' continuing education and training at work in ways which will sustain their employability across lengthening working lives and meet the demands for social cohesion and the increasing economic competitiveness nationally and internationally.
Promoting, Assessing, Recognizing and Certifying Lifelong Learning
Technical, Further and Workplace Education